Wednesday, December 19, 2012

God's Gonna Cut You Down

God will find the Westboro Baptist Church one day... They showed up to protest the funerals of the children of Sandy Hook.  The God I believe in will not tolerate this sort of hate and justice will befall those who have done this wrong.  God bless those in Newtown and those around the area who came to form a human wall to shield the families from such absolute non sense.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sleep in Heavenly Peace....

I do not know when the events of last Friday, December 14th, 2012, will leave my mind. If they ever will... All I know is that children should never have to fear anything of that magnitude. How are you to ever tell your children there are no monsters when clearly there are in this world? How do you explain away or answer their little questions, full of innocence and the black and white world of children?

For the first time since I came of age, I was glad not to be a parent yet on Friday... I feared answering those questions. Questions I have seen on Facebook from friends and their children like "Why didn't Jesus save them? That wasn't nice of Him" or "Where was Santa? Doesn't he like children? He has helpers everywhere..." or the simple "Why didn't the police stop the bad man?"

Perhaps the world is to really end on Friday the 21st... what have we to show for it? What arguments could we make? The only things that make the news anymore are bloody, violent, and pure evil. I do not truly believe the world is meant to end... My calendar ends every year and I do not freak out... but my point is where is the good news? When will we learn? When will we learn that guns and mental illness need some serious rethinking and work in this country and around the world. Norway has had problems too... in recent years... violence and the criminal mind is not limited to just America. I just worry we stigmatize mental illness so much and hold guns so dear. According to ABC news, there are more gun stores in the United States than there are McDonald's restaurants. To me that is insane.

The second amendment to which so many cling to so dearly was written in a time and place vastly different than our own. One where men were meant to defend themselves from a vulnerable position as a fledgling nation, provide for their families, and certainly a place where the accuracy of weapons, particularly handguns or pistols was not that great. If the strictest of proponents want to own muskets and muzzle-loaders then great have at it. The founding fathers could never have fathomed this sort of thing happening... much less automatic weapons, assault rifles, sniper rifles, extend clips with quick release and reload.... on goes the list. These were and would have been fairy tale type weapons and likely considered widely unnecessary... Why on earth would they have needed a gun that could cut down trees? What kind of people have we become to hold so dearly to such a antiquated, misunderstood, and taken vastly out of context law?

As a writer I believe in freedom of speech; the good come with the bad. I can close my ears to what I do not want to hear. I believe the quote goes "I may not agree with what you say but I will fight to the death for your right to say it." I cannot apply this same sort of logic to the second amendment. So I ask you dear Belles, many of you I know grew up hunting and around guns, I did too... When will we learn? How many more Columbine's or now "Sandy Hooks" must there be before we realize the truth sitting in front of our face? How many more benchmark events of tragic, unnecessary death and violence must we have before our eyes are opened? A gun is meant for nothing more than to destroy living tissue. That is what my Daddee always taught us kids. As an object it is just a paperweight; when wielded by man it is a killing machine. That is the lesson we were given from the smallest memories. My father eventually got rid of all weapons in the house, even my grandaddy's shotgun, he no longer saw the need. Especially with all the violence around us all the time. So how much longer will we as a nation "sleep"? How many more children is this nation willing to use as currency to pay for this amendment, this antique right? How long must my heart and the hearts of so many be broken?

God bless y'all.... Happy Christmas. And please no matter your opinions, think about what I have said. Just give it a minute or two and think.


PS: this video is so moving until the scream at the end.... highly unnecessary in my opinion but I warn you it is there.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Wedding Ninjas: 8/4/12

"May you live all the days of your life...."
Jonathan Swift

When I was in Junior High School an English teacher of mine told me if I wanted it my gift to the world could be my words. I do not know about that so much; I have never given words as a gift… to my knowledge. Perhaps I have written something that has moved someone and I do not know it. I no longer share my poetry out of sheer self-consciousness; all I really do anymore is write like this for my blog(s) and if you could only see my journal collection. So I guess I have never given much thought until recently the power words have and the gift they can be. I have no money. I own nothing of my own really… I am a poor student. I have nothing else to give but what I can write here. So for two of the greatest people in my life who are making a commitment to each other for what I honestly believe will be for their whole lives and beyond. This is what I would say if wedding ninjas could fly…

For Jessica and Jared on their Wedding Day:

Things happen in life that you sometimes do not see or appreciate for what they are at the time. I took a job I hated that gave me more than just a paycheck and in the long run more than I could have ever asked for. Sometimes the most horrible situations bring with them miracles unseen or unnoticed until moments of quiet reflection.

On the evening of Saturday, April 2nd, 2011, I agreed to work the concession stand at a dirt race track for my boss at the time. Highlight of my life. While there I got a simple text from Jessica, one of the best friends I have ever had, it was a simple picture of a beautiful blue ring. 208624_504989317103_5149739_nI thought it was gorgeous. I am shocked at the time it took for me to realize it was more than just a beautiful ring; it was the most beautiful ring.

Allow me to back up a moment… I met Jessica in a training class for a new job. At first glance she seemed shy and, forgive me, bookish. I never imagined that God, fate, life… whatever you subscribe to, put her in my path for a reason. She was and is so much more than my first glance told me. Jessica is a beautiful, wise, fun, daring, brave, and a confident young woman and I even being so much older than her quickly found I had/have much to learn from her.

Enter a very tall, very intelligent, and quick witted Jared. I cannot deny the irony of a conversation that Jess and I had in the shoe department of a store one day after work about how cute the “I.T. guy” was and that I liked him. I ended up dating someone else who deserves no mention here except that it was through him that I got to know Jared better, and was able to help bring Jessica and Jared together. I would like to take my small bow here, for being SOLELY responsible for bringing them together… because that’s how I roll.

Jared and that guy I dated… his name fails me now… moved in together and I was living with that guy so for a small time of my life I occupied space with Jared on a regular basis. I am pretty sure it was during this time that he learned I was the most irritating person he had ever encountered; of course I never meant to be, but these things happen. We had some hilariously epic… err… moments. Ranging from thoughts on parking to how okra should be properly fried in the south.

Jessica being the closest thing I have had to a best friend in North Carolina in all the 13-ish years I have lived here fascinated me. She was so much of the person I wanted/want to be and have never had the courage to. Jared and Jessica coming together was the most organic and natural collision of two souls I have ever witnessed. It was clear, very clear, from day one that something special was happening. I am so privileged to have witnessed it from its conception until now with the commencement of a new chapter… THE chapter.

Jared and Jessica have taught me so much over the years despite my initially driving Jared absolutely insane. I tend to talk a lot and get on a roll where 319180_506259107433_147256728_nthings just come out of my mouth with no filter and Jared usually just bangs his head on a table; whilst Jessica patiently gives me a look and I know I have said something really jaded, rash, moronic, or just need to stop… there. Through the two of them I have learned to be less ignorant, less jaded, and way more open minded… Fairly certain this will never extend to Jared’s love of Modest Mouse, but I have tried.

They helped me escape a situation, they knew, that I had to see for myself  what it was before I could walk away and were there to gently help me put it all back together. Together they have continued to help me heal and learn what love is. They have expanded my horizons and given me strength I did not know I had. Jessica has listened to me patiently, talk about nothing other than myself… she has become the voice of reason and logic in my life and head… and Jared has become the brother I wish I had. My love for these two people knows no bounds and I cannot give them anything other than this. My simple words of gratitude, awe, and love. I have never been more honored to know two people and grow with two people in my whole life.

I raise my glass to you, Jessica and Jared as you join in your union today. I am with you always, in your hearts and by spirit. I love you both with my whole heart. You are amazing and deserve more than any shiny trinket I could buy you from Uzbekistan or Turkmenistan or whatever “Stan” I told you I had bought you something from… I had not obviously… I only have this for you. Blessings on your marriage and your love that was obvious to any quiet observer from the very beginning. Cheers to you my friends and in the words of my Irish heritage I toast to you:

May your mornings bring joy and your evenings bring peace.

May your troubles grow few as your blessings increase.

May the saddest day of your future

Be no worse than the happiest day of your past.

May your hands be forever clasped in friendship

And your hearts joined forever in love.

Your lives are very special,

God has touched you in many ways.

May his blessings rest upon you

And fill all your coming days.

I love you.


Yes, it may be cheesy to you…. but I grew up on this music and I always dreamt that this song would play at my wedding one day. The words are powerful and if I could sing or write a song I would hope to write like this. <3

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

On this other blog.... I have....

I have a new author on my old food blog!  Since things are returning to normal and the cooking is falling back to me around here of late, I have felt a huge guilt at not posting my recipes since I last posted!  I am so happy that a new found friend offered to co-author the Food Blog to help me out!  Running two blogs, and a school.... and well just everything else was a whole lot of daunting!  Go check out her first post and as always comments are adored!  Subscribe, vote, follow, we are on Facebook, Picket Fence Blogs.... etc.  Check us out you will be glad you did!

Blue Jean Foodie Queen: Simple Authentic Quick Pasta Sauce:                

Hi I am Jennifer. Amanda told me to indroduce myself which I think is what made me the most nervous about posting on the Blo...

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Seventh Ring of Hell: Election Year

Seventh Ring of Hell: Election Year

Anyone that has been watching the weather at all this summer knows that most of the country has descended into the seventh ring of hell. heat_poweroutages(Except for my readers in the Pacific Northwest who seem to be the only area in the country NOT angry red on the map) I have to wonder if any of this is connected to the fact that it is an election year and things seem so much nastier this year than four years ago.

Does anyone notice that elections seem to get worse and worse every year? The attack ads, the snits, the commentary, the sound bites taken out of context, the back-and-forth snarky remarks… To me, the country has lost its way on both sides of the aisle. I do not want to get all political on you but I think it is time someone Political_Circus_Clownssaid something truthful. Both Republicans and Democrats should be ashamed of themselves for taking something that should by all accounts be a serious endeavor and making it a circus. My father has always stressed the importance of understanding each candidate and the issues and platform the candidate has. Do we ever hear about their platforms anymore? Do we ever hear anything other than hate speech? A country only gets the government it deserves and most people I hear talk about the election only spit out the rhetoric they hear in attack ads and never once question the truth of either side. They do no research and just parrot what they hear. I find it depressing and as oppressive as the wet blanket heat we have in the summer here.

I recently started talking to a guy I thought would be fun and we seemed to have a lot in common. As per my usual, I was wrong. In the first conversation we had he started in on President Obama and Obamacare and any other thing he felt he did not like. When I questioned him why he did not care for any of these things he started telling me how he is not legally an AmericanBirther-Delusion and wants to be a dictator and on and on… about matters that are frankly a moot point. The President presented a birth certificate. Yes his middle name is Hussein but millions of people in the world and our own country carry that name as Islam is one of the world’s largest religions and the President does not practice that religion… it is just a name just like you have that middle name you do not want to share with people. If your middle name is Esmeralda or Irmagarde you are not likely to go around telling people unless you just love that name… I would not but that is my opinion. Neither of those names or whatever name you carry likely as a family name makes you who you are, and it is certainly NOT a reason to not vote for someone. What if a President’s president-obama2middle name was a name generally deemed as wimpy or feminine…. Like Cecil or (here in the south it is common to hear a “girl” name think Gone With The Wind) Courtney… would that make him a bad President? I don’t think it matters.

When I finally spoke my mind to the gentleman, he actually muttered this dismissal “Well you couldn’t possibly understand; females are not meant for political matters.” Uh… hello? We have had the vote since the 20s and somesuffragettes of the greatest political minds in history have been female. Do tell ignorant douche canoe what it is that makes you think this? Can you explain that statement any better than your reason to vote in the other direction? Not that I mind who you vote for; just please know WHY you are doing it and understand it completely. Vote your conscience but know what it is and why. Do not just go into that booth and press a button or two because you believed a commercial. As a communications major I can assure you that those commercials are made to rile you, to sway you, to sound completely legit. It is sadly a mockery of the entire system set forth by our forefathers. It is not a popularity contest, thus the inclusion of the Electoral College. I don’t know Abraham_Lincoln_head_on_shoulders_photo_portraitmaybe it should be a popularity contest but obviously, I am unable to comprehend politics… since I happen to be a chick.

Most people do not understand the five-year overlap idea that President’s contend with; meaning they have to deal with the issues and mistakes or legislation made by the preceding President (think two wars…) so to have any real effect at all they must be a two-term President. The five-year overlap applies whether the President holds one term or two because policies made still take time to go into effect.

Worst still to me is the absolute inability to work together with the current administration. Bipartisanism has become so rampant that nothing is gettingBush Hosts Obama Former Presidents White House GePo2jz9_4cl accomplished at all. Should it matter what party you belong to once you get there? No, it shouldn’t your job is to work together to make the country the best you feel it can be. Not to squabble over parties or just dig in your heels and not participate because you have your head up your ass. We saw this during the first State of the Union when the Republicans responded to the President with so much disrespect and acted like petulant children even screaming the now infamous “LIAR”! This would never pressealhave been tolerated in the early days of our republic. So what has changed? Have we become so apathetic to what is happening that we are willing to flush our country down the toilet? Never in my life have I seen such behavior. I am losing faith in everything I was raised to believe in. Our government is broken. The people who have the power to fix it? We, the voters, but that is not going to happen with blatant misinformation, ignorance, and even in some places flat-out racism.

What is it going to take to put forth viable candidates from both parties? In the last several elections I have felt I am voting for the lesser of two evils. I should not have that choice to make. It shouldn’t be that way. Both candidates should be qualified and competent but no one seems to want to step up.

PS: Dirty little surprise for you here; I am a registered Republican.

Check all the facts and vote your mind, here are some resources:


Monday, July 23, 2012

Chip and the Germy Rapist


Does everyone have a small or perhaps large hang up about public restrooms or is it just me?   I have a “shy” system… so I do my best to be absolutely alone in the restroom. Having Crohn’s did not make me this way; I was always this way…


As a child the family was on a road trip to somewhere and made a stop at those wonderfully clean and inviting rest stops! See? Lovely.... like prison.This one in particular was so welcoming, and “environmental” so much so that I actually had no choice of stall with a functioning door and was quite alarmed to find myself sitting (before I really knew the powers of the “hover”) in this little stall in the back of the restroom hoping no one else would come in… I knew enough at that point in my life that having no locking doors between you and your privates was no bueno… but there in the little stall with chipped green painted wood dividers and as mentioned no door, I found myself eye to eye with a squirrel. I do not mind squirrels so much; they seem kind of cute and have those oddly bushy tails.squirrel02 This squirrel I did mind. He, she, it… was sitting there watching me. I saw where something probably this squirrel had pried open one of the very lovely chicken wire windows and scurried in to observe the bowel habits of humans.

I decided that this squirrel was probably some super powered squirrel with behemoth strength. As we both sat there completely still sizing the other up; it was blocking my way out and I felt as though it thought I was on his turf. I say him because like everything I came or come across in my life I name … I called him “Chip” as in Chip and Dale… YES I know they were chipmunks now, but I didn’t really understand the difference or give it much thought as I desperately tried not to move or release anything from my body given the squirrel might not like my usage of his facilities. So there I sat. Staring, Chip at me and I at Chip. Chip did not move a muscle either; I assumed he did so because he did not want his secret strength to be revealed. My mother finally came searching for me because I had been gone half an hour and she had started to worry if I was okay. Of course as soon as Chip heard her calling my name, his other super power of lightning speed was revealed… she never saw him. pumped-up-squirrelWhen she finally found me tucked away in the back stall I now had another being staring at me… this one now furious that I didn’t answer her when she called and was just twiddling. I tried to explain Chip to her as she stomped off and told me to hurry the hell up. Once back to the safety of the car, I could see Chip sitting in the grass just outside of the shelter; I could feel his little beady eyes on me, plotting the demise of the world. I attempted to tell my tale of Chip and his super powers to my parents only to be shushed and have it brushed off as a tall tale.

Crohn’s only made this aversion to public rest rooms more traumatic because now they are unavoidable. I have to use them; sometimes immediately. I find it mortifying to come flying into a bathroom only to find that the middle and statistically the dirtiest stall in the entire room open and that someone hasn’t flushed or peed all over the seat. Gentlemen you may think that a woman’s myownplace01restroom is clean and orderly and nice… but trust me when I tell you they are usually pee soaked nightmares behind the stall doors and a huge watery mess at the sinks. The only time I have enjoyed a restroom was the one time in Great Britain I had the honor of using the water closet at Harrods and there was an attendant ready and waiting. (Wouldn’t that be the worst job?) Then it was hard for me too… pre Crohn’s but still there is this person sitting out there in the country known for manners and decorum and I am about to go rip one in the stall. I tried the flush and go… so that they wouldn’t hear me but that did not work. I think she caught on because the water started running and I finally relaxed enough to take Ax5rHytCAAAma6Tcare of business. As I emerged, maroon from head to toe with embarrassment she politely said “Just warming the water for you Miss, it takes some time with these old pipes.” Then I felt even worse because she knew what I knew she knew… As I washed my hands and went for the door I heard her quietly rise from her seat and spray some air freshener. I could have fainted. I just told myself it was standard procedure… and prayed to God I didn’t ruin the poor lady’s day. Enough about that… because I do not enjoy reliving that…

I noticed the other day as I scooted into a restroom in a building where my doctor’s office is, smiling to find it empty and the last stall clear and clean-ish… I always use the very first or very last stall because I read a study that examined the cleanliness of public restrooms and found those stalls to be the least used and typically the cleanest. The closer to the middle you get the nastier it gets; word to the wise. So I find myself there with the hopeless little piece of tissue paper seat cover they give out; I find the only thing these are actually useful for is to discover hidden spots of “water” I question their ability to save me from someone else’s creatures. I have hung my purse and secured myself, and have only just sat down to deal with my issue and in The_Ladies_Roomstomps someone. Silently I pray they take the first stall. Clearly my feet are visible underneath the stall… BUT this is never what happens. Have you ever noticed that people seem to be drawn to the stall immediately next to you, especially if you have a shy bladder? So this woman stomps into the stall next to me slamming the door and causing the entire stall system to wobble. She sits down and starts grunting like a boar in heat. For a moment I am worried she might be giving birth.

Then the noise erupting from her stall proved to me why I NEVER like going with someone in the restroom. Not even a courtesy flush… Sweet tea and baby Jesus I thought I was going to pass out. Why when you have to poo do you go sit next to someone? Do some people feel this is a bonding thing? My dog seems to think it is, and will sit at the door and whimper until I let him in and there he just stares at me; that creeps me out… but I love him so I have gotten sort of used to it. I have been able to train him to look away at the door which helps. I digress.

When you have to relieve that much and make that much noise doing it would you not want to be as far away from humanity as possible? Does anyone think it is polite society to come in and drop several deuces, whilst grunting, and I will mention hollering (yes she was yelling to Jesus) maybe she had eaten Taco Bell.taco-HELL-231x300 I do not know and I naturally did not ask. I was thankful she did not need toilet paper. At one point I think she was kicking or hitting the stall door or walls… I am not sure. Normally I would have laughed but I couldn’t breathe. She did finally leave and I had to Lysol after she left. Yes, I do carry travel sized Lysol with me in my purse… you just do not know what is lurking in these public restrooms. I decided whatever she had might be catching and I did not need that mixed with my Crohn’s and dear Lord… Still it got me thinking about why people seem to do this. Does this happen to any of y’all? Or am I the only one that people seem to want to take the dump of their lives next to? Seriously? I find it disturbing and worse still painful because I am trying to hold mine back whatever I have to do out of my sheer shyness… politeness? It never fails though I can be alone in a movie theater bathroom with something like 78 stalls and in the last stall… guess where the one person who comes in sits?

It is worse when they have a child with them. I once had a kid slide under a stall, look up at me and ask me if I had to do number one, number two, or was I doing number three. God knows what his mother was doing but she wasn’t watching her child… now I was. I have no idea what number three is… and I do not want to know. The mother who is sitting in the stall the size of a large IMG_2496shoebox finally notices that her son has slid under the stall and is attempting to carry on a conversation with one very shocked me… and she only fusses at him for being on the floor of a bathroom! No hey lady I am so sorry my kid is staring at you and your bits and questioning your business…. But instead he is only chastised for getting germy. I do not about any of you, dear readers, and your upbringings but my mother would have beaten the ever living snot out of me for moving much less crawling around on the floor and worse still into another stall to talk to another person. 77 other stalls… and they choose the one next to me. Go use the baby stall and strap that kid to the changer…. I don’t care, but if your toddler has a propensity to slide under stalls and check out other ladies I think that is an early warning sign of a rapist. Just saying.315311_390151994379970_985314373_n

Please let me know if you have ever had anything like this happen to you… or if you have noticed this issue of people wanting to sit next to you whilst taking care of bathroom needs.

PS: The “germy rapist” chap and his momma did not wash their hands. So much for germs huh lady?


Saturday, May 26, 2012

Worth a Thousand Words

The Green Fields of France

Well, how do you do, Private William McBride, 
Do you mind if I sit down here by your graveside? 
And rest for awhile in the warm summer sun, 
I've been walking all day, and I'm nearly done. 
And I see by your gravestone you were only 19 
When you joined the glorious fallen in 1916, 
Well, I hope you died quick and I hope you died clean 
Or, Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene? 

Did they Beat the drum slowly, did the play the pipes lowly? 
Did the rifles fir o'er you as they lowered you down? 
Did the bugles sound The Last Post in chorus? 
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest? 

And did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind 
In some loyal heart is your memory enshrined? 
And, though you died back in 1916, 
To that loyal heart are you forever 19? 
Or are you a stranger without even a name, 
Forever enshrined behind some glass pane, 
In an old photograph, torn and tattered and stained, 
And fading to yellow in a brown leather frame? 

The sun's shining down on these green fields of France; 
The warm wind blows gently, and the red poppies dance. 
The trenches have vanished long under the plow; 
No gas and no barbed wire, no guns firing now. 
But here in this graveyard that's still No Man's Land 
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand 
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man. 
And a whole generation who were butchered and damned. 

And I can't help but wonder, no Willie McBride, 
Do all those who lie here know why they died? 
Did you really believe them when they told you "The Cause?" 
Did you really believe that this war would end wars? 
Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame 
The killing, the dying, it was all done in vain, 
For Willie McBride, it all happened again, 
And again, and again, and again, and again.